Caffeine Elimination and worsening MAV?

HI all,
My doctor (Hain) advised me to try the migraine diet which is trying all on its own. Have any of you had success eliminating coffee? I’m currently dizzy, nauseated and unbalanced 24/7 for nearly 4 months. I’m taking ativan twice a day to take the edge off the symptoms and I’m on my third week of topamax (50 mg) and going up to 75mg next week. I know that I get headaches when I don’t have caffeine in the morning, which I can tolerate, however, I’m worried that my dizziness will get worse once I cut out the caffeine.
Any thoughts?

Hi Sarah,

Eliminating caffeine should improve your dizziness, not worsen it. I don’t know of anyone who has experienced more dizziness by giving up caffeine. Personally, giving up caffeine was a key component in getting my severe vertigo under control in the beginning of my MAV saga. I have since added it back because it helps me get going in the morning, but I have to admit I sometimes trigger my symptoms a bit with it. Now that I have things mostly under control, it is worth the energy payoff to me, but in the beginning eliminating caffeine was key. I recommend giving it up for sure while you are still in such an unstable state with your MAV.

Good luck!


DId you slowly reduce intake or go “cold turkey”? I curently consume about 200mg (2 cups) in the morning.
I’m glad to know it didn’t make your dizziness worse : )

I quit cold turkey. I had withdrawal headaches for several days, though. So you may want to taper off to avoid those.

I quit cold turkey also…and I am sure it has helped my symptoms. Perhaps there is something else that is triggering your dizziness…are you following the diet very closely , I know it can be hard but in the end for me at least it was worth it.

You could taper with decaf which it recommended by Dr B if you cannot quit cold turkey. But I really think it is most likely something else that is causing the trigger of headaches and dizziness.

Sometimes the meds are trying in and of themselves at times perhaps it is that…I would stay on the diet and give it time to really do some good along with the medication…

I’m just beginning and I am having a REALLY hard time figuring out which foods I can eat. Some source contradict other sources when it comes to certain foods. Any suggestions for good accurate food lists?

Good question sasad! I can’t figure out what your supposed to eat and what not to eat, like you said there seems to be contradictions. As for coffee I quit cold turkey and didn’t notice any improvements in my headaches but I did with my stomach. I am now having 1/2 a cup a day because most migraine lists do say 1 to 2 servings a day is fine. Who knows?!?!


WAs your stomach better or worse? I’m fight severe nausea every single day! I’d give up coffee to know that it might possibly ease the nausea!

My stomach got QUITE a bit better. I fight a lot of nausea too and even the half a cup I snitch is enough to get it going a little more, but somedays it’s worth it other days it’s not. I think you should give it a couple of weeks and see if eliminating it helps. I saw somewhere water decaffeinated coffee is MAV and stomach friendly. As soon as I find some I’m going to try it, I love the taste of coffee!!

The Migraine Brain book suggests tapering off coffee because caffeine is a drug itself so you need to treat it like a drug. The hyperexcitable migraine brain will react to any change either starting caffeine or stopping caffeine. By the way, I drink the water filtered decaf and love it. I have a Keurig coffee maker and order Caribou decaf coffee, it is water filtered decaf … I order it online.
Good luck!

4 days with no caffeine and no headache!
Who would have guessed that the migraine meds are actually working to control headaches, just not anything else… go figure :shock:
I’m thankful for no headache, just wishful for no dizzies!

Hey there! I’d love to know how you’re doing! I’m always curious if people find something that helps!! Did your migraine elimination diet point out any major triggers for dizziness? Mine did, but then some days it seems like I’m dizzy even if I’ve been eating perfectly. Ugh! Woukd love to know how things have turned out for you. I’m a mom of 2 little girls and have been struggling with this since before they were born. Im determined to find help…if not a cute one day! I don’t even remember what it’s like to not feel dizzy. :/.